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Violating Sanctions

An American Woman’s Listening Tour Through the Axis of Evil

“All the Family is Scattered”

The Author By Kelly Hayes-Raitt | May 27th, 2008 | Comments No Comments

The old woman starts talking before the others have finished, desperate to tell her story. In fact, her words rush too fast for the translator, who implores her to slow down.

The 75-year-old woman’s husband died during the Gulf War. Her oldest son, an engineer, dodged Sadaam’s draft by escaping to Sweden. Her daughter is a dental assistant in Amman. Her other daughter refused to become a Baathist and was forced to leave Iraq. Her youngest son committed suicide.

“I was in the supermarket and I spoke to a woman American soldier. My neighbors accused me of being a spy. One neighbor was slaughtered for being a Christian. There was no protection; I was scared. They already called me a spy, so I left.” The old woman’s words spilled out in a defiant rush.

“I was living in Baghdad alone. All the family is scattered. I brought nothing (except) the death certificates for my husband and son.”

She hopes to join her nephew in San Diego. “There is no way I can go back to Iraq. I have no house, nothing there. I have nobody. Only God can protect me now.”

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